Apple's final iOS 17.4 beta could debut today as Apple readies its EU-appeasing update

Apple's iOS 17.4 iPhone software update is just around the corner and the final beta release could be released today according to a new report.

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Apple has been testing the iOS 17.4 iPhone software update for a long time, and we're expecting it to release the new devices pretty soon. Now, a new report suggests that the final beta is just around the corner and, in fact, it could be released to developer testers today.

Apple's iOS 17.4 update will bring with it a number of notable changes, especially for those who live in EU countries, and it's one that has been tested in beta form for weeks. Apple rarely confirms when we should expect updates to ship but we do know that it has to make iOS 17.4 available for download before March 6 - the date that new EU Digital Markets Act rules come into force. With that in mind, the final beta arriving today makes plenty of sense.

The impending iOS 17.4 Release Candidate was first shared by X user @aaronp613, a developer who has built something of a reputation for sharing details about what Apple is working on based on clues he finds in its software. Now, he says that Apple is already starting to roll out some changes to the App Store's servers that will enable support for third-party app stores, dubbed App Marketplaces.

When Apple ships iOS 17.4 to the public it will allow support for third-party app stores for the first time at the behest of the DMA which explains why these back-end changes are being made. Apple isn't adding support for App Marketplaces willingly of course, but this isn't the only change that iOS 17.4 will offer. Those in the EU will also be able to use web browsers that aren't based on the Safari WebKit engine for the first time, too. Other changes include better support for third-party payment systems and more.

Apple generally releases its first Release Candidate update a few days before it makes the final update available to the public so a launch today would make plenty of sense. Assuming that there are no big issues found this will be the final beta, although further Release Candidate updates are possible should bugs be found that need to be fixed before the final release can be pushed out to users.

Changes coming globally include improvements to Stolen Device Protection, transcriptions in the Apple Podcasts app, and new features for those whose CarPlay-capable vehicles have multiple displays.

As for when that final release will happen, it's likely that we will see Apple make iOS 17.4 available to everyone on Monday or Tuesday of next week.

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NEWS SOURCES:9to5mac.com, apple.com

Based in the UK, Oliver has been writing about technology, entertainment, and games for more than a decade. If there's something with a battery or a plug, he's interested. After spending too much money building gaming PCs, Oliver switched to Apple and the Mac - and now spends too much on those instead.

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